I want to protect you and your loved ones from becoming victims of crimes by the catholic church and all abusers of human beings. I want to give survivors of sexual and physical abuse a voice to be heard all over the world. All abuse of children and adults by religious groups and by any organization or individual must be stopped. We can add our voices to a growing, worldwide community of people who want truth and justice. Please share your experiences with me and others on this blog.
#PopeFrancis tells clergy abuse survivor to shut up and get off Commission for Protection of Minors
Peter Saunders, clergy abuse survivor, forced to leave Pope Francis' Commission
Saunders, English advocate for sexually abused children and one of two
survivors on the Pope’s Commission for the Protection of Minors was given an
unrequested “leave of absence” by the Holy See.
Note that the Pope is the ruler of both the Vatican City State and the
Holy See. So it is really the Pope that
didn’t approve of Saunders. Why? Maybe it is his role as head of the UK National
Association for People Abused in Childhood. Or, the Pope and his cohorts didn’t
like him saying that the Vatican system was “essentially corrupt and unwilling to
do the right thing”. Or, Pope Francis
didn’t like being criticized for appointing Chilean bishop Juan Barros to the
Diocese of Osorno when Barros is accused of covering up the sex abuse crimes of
Fr Fernando Karadima.
to The Irish Times, Peter Saunders said he was “shell-shocked” and disappointed
at the manner in which the “inquisition” had expressed a vote of no confidence
in him especially as he was personally asked to join the panel by Pope Francis.
says he is still on the commission until he decides to leave or Pope Francis
personally asks him to step down. A
Vatican spokesman said Saunders “can say what he wants” and that the separation
with Saunders “was a unanimous decision made by the members, with only one
abstention.” Marie Collins, the other survivor of clerical sexual abuse, said
on Twitter that she hadn’t voted in favor of removing Saunders.
David Clohessy, SNAP
Clohessy, Director of SNAP* (the Survivors
Network of those Abused by Priests) said, “We share Pete Saunders’ justifiable
frustration with Vatican officials. They refuse to take quick, simple, common
sense steps to protect kids and deter cover ups by punishing clerics who
conceal abuse. Instead, they do what church officials have done for decades:
shrewdly fixate on and discuss meaningless internal policies on paper that give
the impression of progress while changing virtually nothing.” “Pete has been a brave, honest and tireless
voice for kids and victims.”
Pope’s abuse panel will issue recommendations. The Pope will adopt them. And
nothing will improve. Why? Because there will be no enforcement. Why? Because
the church hierarchy is an entitled, rigid, secretive, all-male monarchy. No
new protocols or policies or procedures will radically undo a centuries-old
self-serving structure that rewards clerics who keep a tight lid on child sex
crimes and cover ups,” said Clohessy.
the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and
largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and
has more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have
members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including
nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org
Francis had promised to attend commission meetings to answer questions about
his handling of the sex abuse issue but he did not. “Of course Pope Francis has established he is
part of the problem,” Peter Saunders said in an interview with Agence France AFPTV.
“That breaks my heart because when I met
him 18 months ago I thought there was a sincerity and a willingness to make
things happen, and I am afraid that has been dashed now.”
creating the Commission, the Holy See is up to its old tricks: giving it “no teeth” – It is an advisory
body, with no authority to change rules or judge specific abuse complaints. No action: They issue statements like
asking Pope Francis to remind all bishops of the importance of personal
outreach to abuse victims, and also to institute a “Universal Day of
Prayer” as well as a penitential liturgy for the crime of sexual abuse. They’ll
hold workshops on the legal aspects of the protection of minors. I
underlined the “no actions.” As if talking and praying will heal children
who were raped and punish their attackers -- or stop the multitude of pedophile
priests currently stalking more children worldwide.
says now he realizes the commission was “smoke and mirrors” and he is convinced
the Church will never act alone to cure the “cancer” of child abuse. He added that he doesn’t want to work under
secrecy and in darkness or, “be silenced on an issue as important as child
biggest lie promoted by the Vatican and the Pope is that clerical sex abuse is
a problem of past decades and no longer exists. “This is not in any sense a historical
issue or problem,” Saunders said. “It has to be tackled now. The Pope could do
so much more and he is doing next to nothing. This is a societal problem — but
if the Church, the so-called moral leadership of the world, does not take a
lead in this area it would quite rightly be considered morally bankrupt in
every other area.”
Francis, stop convening commissions that do nothing and start taking action –
like opening up the Vatican records on your child-abusing clergy and handing
them and the clergy over to the police.